Physics Today features an article entitled Earth's land surface temperature trends: A new approach confirms previous results, by Barbara Goss Levi, on the Berkeley project for measuring and reconstructing the Earth's temperature, started by UC Berkeley physicist Richard Muller, and his daughter Elizabeth, enlisting the collaboration of scientists at UC Berkeley, Livermore, and Oregon State University. Their project was modestly entitled BEST: Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature. (BEST has not addressed ocean temperatures, but they plan to do so.)
Before BEST, there were three earlier (and continuing) projects: (1) the Climatic Research Unit (CRU) of the University of East Anglia, U. K. working with the Hadley Center of the UK Met Office; (2) NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS), and (3) NOAA's National Climatic Data Center (NCDC). These three projects obtained results that are in agreement with each other. And they all show a global warming trend in the last century or so, and they are in agreement with each other.
Muller's BEST is the fourth effort at finding the Earth's global temperature and its trend. The BEST results are in agreement with the earlier three results for land temperature.
The reaction may be, "ho hum". Is there a point to the BEST project? I think so. The Berkeley team addresses some specific criticisms made of prior analyses: not enough data and allegedly flawed procedures for correcting data discontinuities (e.g., move of a station to a new location). In addition, Muller has pulled together 14 previously compiled databases. Gavin Schmidt of NASA's GISS credits BEST for releasing the data in a consistent way. BEST has put on its website not just the raw data but also the computer code for analyzing the data.
Some 20 months ago, I covered this study, right here on the pages of Rabett Run. And I was hardly snarky at all. Well, maybe a little bit.
This really ought to be the end of the "trend deniers", who think the Earth is not warming. It should be the last of four nails in the coffin.